Symposium 04: Amazonian Fungi.

Organized by Romina Gazis. Biology Department. Clark University. USA.

The Amazon is an area of exceptionally high biodiversity and endemism. Biological research has flourished in the last decades; however, there are some groups of hyperdiverse organisms, as fungi, that had been largely overlooked. Fungi play numerous roles within the forest community, one of the most important being the recycling of nutrients derived from the breakdown of plant and animal matter. Fungi are thought to represent a large part of tropical communities, including a broad range of host-fungus symbioses, such as mycorrhizae, endophytic and parasitic associations. In many cases, fungi serve as nutrient source for a diverse array of animals (e.g., mycophagous insects and mammals) as well as refuge (e.g., insects and insects larvae). Due to their many ecological roles, fungi have an essential influence in ecosystem dynamics and represent key species in the maintenance of tropical biodiversity. Mycological research in Amazonian countries is still at an early stage of development being Argentina, Brazil and Colombia the leading countries in fungal biodiversity research. Inventories help us evaluate and designate “hot spots of biodiversity” and provide biologists with the basic knowledge to elaborate conservation plans. The total number of fungi has been predicted to be 1.5 million from which only ~10% have been described. If the presumed 6:1 fungi to plant ratio is applicable for Amazonian forests, we can potentially be loosing an incredible amount of fungi due to habitat loss. 

We invite the community to participate in this symposium, which aims to promote collaboration among local and foreigner mycologists and fungi-enthusiasts. Talks will focus on fungal biodiversity; however, topics on applied research such as bio-prospection of fungal enzymes and metabolites, phytopathology, and other areas of fungal research are welcomed. 

Symposium program: October 17, 2015.

13:30 - 13:35: Welcome. Romina Gazis/Clark University.

13:35 - 13:55: Fungi of Peru. Speaker: Romina Gazis. Institution: Clark University.

13:55 - 14:15: Establishing a baseline for macro-fungal diversity in the Peruvian Andes. Speaker: Magdalena Pavlich.

Authors: Trutmann P (1), Holgado M.E. (2), Luque A.R. (1), Quispe, A (2), Lopez, M. (3), and Pavlich, M.R. (4). Institutions: (1) Global Mountain Action, (2) Universidad Nacional San Antonio Abad de Cusco, (3) Universidad Cesar Vallejo de Chiclayo, (4) Universidad Peruano Cayetano Heredia.

14:15 - 14:35: Wild and Cultivated Edible Mushrooms in Peru. Speaker: Laura Fiorella Cadenillas.

Authors: Cadenillas L.F. (1), Chimey C. (2), Laura T. (3), Pavlich M.R. (1). Institutions: (1) Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia, (2) FungiPro, (3) GREEN BIRD S.A.C.

14:35 - 14:55: High diversity of Graphidaceae (lichenized Ascomycota: Ostropales) in Amazonian Perú. Speaker: Eimy Rivas Plata.

Authors: Rivas Plata E. and Lücking R. Institution: The Field Museum.

14:55 - 15:15: Genomics of fungi with industrial applications from the Peruvian Amazon. Speaker: Marcel Gutiérrez-Correa.

Authors: Gutiérrez-Correa M., Sujay P., Villena G.K. Institution: Universidad Nacional Agraria La Molina.

15:15 - 15:35: Amazonian Collections at the Farlow Herbarium. Speaker: Teresa Iturriaga. Institution: Harvard University.

15:35-16.00: Coffee Break

16:00 - 16:20: Ectomycorrhizal fungal communities associated with tropical lowland forest in Amazonia, Colombia. Speaker: Aída Marcela Vasco Palacios.

Authors: Vasco-Palacios A.M. (1-3), Franco-Molano A.E. (1), Hernandez J. (1-2), Boekhout T (2). Institutions: (1) Group of Taxonomy and Ecology of Fungi, Institute of Biology, Antioquia University, Medellín Colombia, (2) CBS-KNAW, Fungal Biodiversity Centre, The Netherlands, (3) Fundación Biodiversa Colombia, Bogotá D.C. Colombia.

16:20 - 16:40: Metabarcoding reveals high diversity and habitat specificity of fungi in the Yungas. Speaker: József Geml.

Authors: Geml J. (1), Pastor N. (2), Fernandez L. (2), Nouhra E. (2). Institutions: (1) Naturalis Biodiversity Center, The Netherlands, (2) Instituto Multidisciplinario de Biología Vegetal (IMBIV) - Universidad Nacional de Córdoba, Argentina.

16:40 - 17:00:  Discussion 

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